Effective September 26, 2017, UCLA is lowering its roadway speed limit from 25 mph to 20 mph. The goal is to make the campus even safer for pedestrians and bicyclists. Plus, lowering the speed limit encourages more people to use active transportation modes, which will, in turn, make UCLA a healthier campus.
Studies have shown that the chances of a serious injury or death for a pedestrian struck by a motor vehicle rise rapidly as speed increases. A motorist traveling at 16 mph, for example, has a 10% chance of sustaining serious injuries, while a motorist going 31 mph has a 50% chance.
The risk of death for a pedestrian also increases as vehicle speeds increase. A pedestrian faces a 10% risk of death when struck by a vehicle traveling at 23 mph and a 50% chance at 42 mph.
“For years, UCLA Transportation has worked with its campus partners to transform the car-centric campus built environment to a more walkable, bike-able, livable campus,” said Dave Karwaski, senior associate director of planning and traffic.
The effort to reduce the campus speed limit has occurred incrementally over time. UCLA first reduced campus roadways speeds from 35 mph to 25 mph in 2005. Lower speed limits have in recent years been introduced in several cities as well.